Cultural Critic, media scholar, activist, and Rag Blog contributing editor Jonah Raskin is Thorne Dreyer’s guest on Rag Radio. We discuss his latest book, “A Terrible Beauty: The Wilderness of American Literature.” Jim Retherford writes in The Rag Blog (http://www.theragblog.com/james-retherford-literature-wild-things/) that Raskin looks at the “forest of books before and after Thoreau from the perspective of the contemporary environment crisis and offers insights into the uniquely American contradictions that inform our national character.” Historian Eric Foner says: "Jonah Raskin reminds us that it is still possible to say something new and important about American literature."
Raskin is an activist and educator and the author of a dozen books (and poetry chap books), including biographies of Allen Ginsberg and Abbie Hoffman. A Sixties radical (he was Minister of Information for the Youth International Party [Yippies]), Raskin is Professor Emiritus at Sonoma State University in northern California where he chaired the Communication Studies Department. Previously he was Fulbright professor at the University of Antwerp and the University of Ghent in Belgium and was on the faculty at the State University of New York, Stony Brook. Raskin got his Ph.D. at the University of Manchester, where he wrote a dissertation about Rudyard Kipling and Joseph Conrad which later morphed into his first book, "The Mythology of Imperialism," published by Random House in 1971. Noted cultural critic Edward Said called it "one of the genuinely important handful of books on modern literature published in the last two decades."
Host and Producer of Rag Radio: Thorne Dreyer; Engineer and Co-Producer: Tracey Schulz; Still Photographer: Roger Baker. Rag Radio (koop.org/ragradio) is produced in the studios of KOOP 91.7-FM, an all-volunteer, cooperatively-run community radio station in Austin, Texas, in association with The Rag Blog (TheRagBlog.com) and the New Journalism Project, a Texas 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The show is broadcast (and streamed) live Fridays, 2-3 p.m. (Central) on KOOP, and is rebroadcast and streamed on WFTE-FM in Mt. Cobb and Scranton, PA., Sundays at 10 a.m. (Eastern time) and on Houston Pacifica's KPFT HD-3 90.1 on Wednesdays at 1 p.m. (Central). Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org. Running time: 56:10.